The objectives of the present studies were to investigate the developmental capacity of dromedary camel oocytes selected by brilliant cresyl blue (BCB) staining and to investigate the expression of select transcripts in germinal vesicle (GV) stage oocytes. These transcripts included BMP15 and GDF9 as important transcripts for folliculogenesis and oocyte development, Zar1 and Mater as maternal transcripts required for embryonic development, Cyclin B1 and CDK1 as cell cycle regulators and Oct4 and STAT3 as transcription factors. Dromedary camel oocytes were retrieved from ovaries collected at a local slaughterhouse. After exposure to BCB staining, cumulus–oocyte complexes (COCs) from BCB+, BCB− and control (selected based on morphological criteria) groups were subjected to in vitro maturation, in vitro fertilization and in vitro culture. For gene expression studies, after BCB staining cumulus cells were stripped off and the completely denuded GV stage oocytes were used for RT-PCR analysis of selected transcripts. BCB+ oocytes showed higher maturation, and fertilization rates compared with BCB− and control groups. Indices of early embryonic development, namely, cleavage at 48 hours post insemination (hpi), and development to morula at day 5 and day 7 blastocyst rates were also significantly higher in the BCB+ group. RT-PCR revealed a higher expression of BMP15, GDF9, Zar1, Mater, Cyclin B1, CDK1, OCT4 and STAT3 in good quality oocytes that stained positively for BCB (BCB+). Collectively, results provide novel information about the use of BCB screening for selecting good quality oocytes to improve in vitro embryo production in the dromedary camel.